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BUSINESS
August 20, 2013 | By David Lazarus
Michael has owned his iPhone for more than two years. In other words, he figures he's paid off the subsidy that AT&T ponied up when he agreed to a two-year contract. Yet Michael's wireless bill hasn't gone down. Is that fair? ASK LAZ: Smart answers to consumer questions No, of course not. You'd think that once the total cost of the device has been covered, a user's monthly bill would reflect that fact. But that's typically not the case. Wireless companies, once they've got you on the hook, want to keep you on the hook.
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BUSINESS
October 24, 2013 | By David Lazarus
Bill's daughter recently purchased a house, and it came with a home warranty. Then the trouble started. She took a shower and discovered that water was seeping out of the walls. Yow! Bill's daughter contacted the warranty provider and was told the policy didn't cover plumbing. ASK LAZ: Smart answers to consumer questions Bill asks: Is that how these things usually work? And the answer is: No. Most home warranties cover plumbing, along with most other major systems and appliances.
NEWS
February 26, 2014
Bill Nagel joined the Los Angeles Times as Executive Vice President, Business Services in July 2009. In this role, Nagel is responsible for growing alternative revenue streams through the marketing and sales of The Times world-class print production, distribution and marketing services to other entities across Southern California. He is also responsible for business to consumer marketing for the Los Angeles Times Media Group's portfolio of products.  Previously, Nagel was Sr. Vice President of Business Channels for the San Diego Union-Tribune, overseeing both consumer and advertising revenue development.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 21, 2013 | By Maura Dolan
SAN FRANCISCO -- California retailers may be liable for large money awards if they falsely advertise that their products are on sale. A federal appeals court Tuesday revived a potential class-action lawsuit against Kohl's Department Stores for allegedly misstating in advertising that items had been marked down. The U.S. 9 th Circuit Court of Appeals said California consumer laws permit such lawsuits if the customer would not have made the purchase but for the perceived bargain.
OPINION
June 28, 2012
Re "Suit targets consumer watchdog," Business, June 23 I found it amusing to read that C. Boyden Gray, an attorney in a suit challenging the constitutionality of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, complains about how unfair and wrong it is that "if you're a poor beleaguered financial institution … and you are set upon by this bureau, you have no access to the democratic system … to appeal what's happened. " Perhaps Gray might also consider the plight of a private individual set upon by one of those "poor beleaguered financial institutions.
BUSINESS
January 21, 2014 | By David Lazarus
David wants to know if there's a best time to buy cruise tickets. Do you get the best deals if you dive in early and book months in advance, or is it smartest to wait until the last minute and see what's available? ASK LAZ: Smart answers to consumer questions Both approaches have advantages and disadvantages. To find out what the experts say, check out today's Ask Laz video. If you have a consumer question, email me at asklaz@latimes.com or contact me via Twitter @Davidlaz .
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 20, 1988
One would have to be deaf, dumb and blind to be unaware of the insurance industry's multimedia blitz concerning no-fault insurance. This canard must be refuted. Does anyone really believe that the insurance companies, widely known for their philanthropy, are interested in saving consumers' insurance dollars? Nothing could be further from the truth. In other no-fault states, the insurance industry has reaped huge profits from the conversion to no-fault, without lowering rates. The fact is California's insurance laws protect the consumer adequately (although they could do much more)
BUSINESS
August 29, 2002 | Associated Press
Conseco Inc. was dealt another blow when a court upheld an arbitrator's order that it pay nearly $27 million for violations of consumer protection laws by a company Conseco acquired. The South Carolina Supreme Court made the ruling in a case that was argued in March. The case affects 3,739 South Carolina customers with home-improvement or mobile-home loans in the mid-1990s from what was then Green Tree Financial Corp. Conseco bought Green Tree in 1998, two years after the dispute began.
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